PEPPER PIKE, Ohio— Charges have been filed against three teenagers accused of sending threats that closed Orange High School and created panic among their community, the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office confirmed.
All three are males and Orange High School students.
Each faces 17 felony counts of inducing panic, two counts of telecommunications harassment and one count of possession of criminal tools.
Two of the boys are 16-years-old and the third is 17-years-old.
The case is being handled by juvenile court but there’s a chance they could be charged as adults.
In order to conceal their identity, the boys used an online service to create an encryption code that disguised their computers.
The Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office said the boys were trying to close school for a week.
Beginning on Nov. 6, bomb threats were sent through email to school and media officials, forcing the school to close for three days.
After that, classes resumed under tighter security, but the emails continued, many threatening to harm students and staff with biological agents.
If convicted, the boys could receive probation or spend time behind bars until they’re 21-years-old.
At the time of this report an arraignment date had not been set.
The boys have also been undergoing disciplinary hearings at Orange High School and could be expelled.
Because of the missed school days, Orange High extended its school day by a half-hour until February.